In one embodiment there is provided an application of the .sup.10 B(n,.alpha.).sup.7 Li nuclear reaction or other neutron capture reactions for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. This application, called Boron Neutron Capture Synovectomy (BNCS), requires substantially altered demands on neutron beam design than for instance treatment of deep seated tumors. Considerations for neutron beam design for the treatment of arthritic joints via BNCS are provided for, and comparisons with the design requirements for Boron Neutron Capture Therapy (BNCT) of tumors are made. In addition, exemplary moderator/reflector assemblies are provided which produce intense, high-quality neutron beams based on (p,n) accelerator-based reactions. In another embodiment there is provided the use of deuteron-based charged particle reactions to be used as sources for epithermal or thermal neutron beams for neutron capture therapies. Many d,n reactions (e.g. using deuterium, tritium or beryllium targets) are very prolific at relatively low deuteron energies.
This invention was made with government support under Contract No. DE-FG02-89ER60874 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy and under Grant No. R43AR43680 awarded by the NIH. The government has certain rights in the invention.